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Mitchell and Kenyon: Blackpool Promenade Extension (1905)


Main image of Mitchell and Kenyon: Blackpool Promenade Extension (1905)
Mitchell and Kenyon 202 Blackpool Promenade Extension
35mm, 97 ft, black & white, silent
Production CompanyMitchell and Kenyon
Commissioner / ExhibitorThomas Barassford

Edwardian holidaymakers stroll along the seafront as work continues on a new promenade.

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Blackpool's local press commented on the record crowds visiting the town during the Easter of 1905. Blackpool had become the holiday destination for the less well-off, who, thanks to legislation reducing working hours, found trips away from home much more attainable. The extension of Blackpool promenade had begun in 1894 and would reach the South Pier, which opened in the same year.

The Blackpool Times waxed especially lyrical:

"It is surprising how much Blackpool is appreciated by visitors, and how the sea has a charm for them all of its own.... It is truly emancipation; and when sunny memories of happy, though brief, holidays crowd in upon them, can one wonder that these thousands of our industrial community should flock to Blackpool, there to renew old, or maybe to create new, association whose brightness will serve to illumine many a weary hour?"

While many of the hundreds of films shot by Edwardian filmmakers Sagar Mitchell and James Kenyon were determined to cram as many faces as possible into the frame, this film focuses as much on the processes of building the extension and the moving and shovelling of sand (with the help of horse and cart) as it does on the teeming holidaymakers and the plentiful goods available at the local market. The splendid opening shot shows off the scale and beauty of the pier.

Rebecca Vick

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Video Clips
Complete film (2:08)
Mitchell and Kenyon: Blackpool North Pier (1903)
Mitchell and Kenyon: Blackpool Victoria Pier (1904)
Mitchell and Kenyon